Monday, August 27, 2007


I woke up at about 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, tinkered around and drank coffee, guzzled water and mentally/physically prepared myself until 11:30ish. Parked the car on the trail and headed's what happened:

Mile 1 - 8:39
Mile 2 - 8:41
Mile 3 - 8:44
Mile 4 - 8:35
Mile 5 - 8:47
Mile 6 - 8:37
Mile 7 - 8:32
Mile 8 - 8:41
Mile 9 - 8:49
Mile 10 - 8:49

The first ten miles were great. I had placed the car in a spot where I could stop back at about mile 7 where I took a quick drink break, maybe a minute or so, then headed right back out. As you can see, I start slowing down in the next 10 miles, but things didn't really start feeling bad until Mile 15.

Mile 11 - 9:06
Mile 12 - 9:11
Mile 13 - 9:21
Mile 14 - 9:13
Mile 15 - 9:29

This is where I paused because of pork chop (which I don't even like) hallucinations. Over two hours into it and my body was screaming at me. For the food I didn't eat and the water I didn't take with me on the run. Yes, I didn't have anything to eat before my run - at all, unless a vanilla latte counts. I staggered off the trail at a park figuring I'd find a water fountain and I did. I also opened my eyes to the hundreds of feet of blackberry bushes that line everything in Seattle. And they were ready to eat. I spent about 5 minutes shoveling those down my gullet; I was clearly in survival mode. Back to the run.

Mile 16 - 10:38
Mile 17 - 10:05

Stopped again for some blackberries - had thorn cuts all over my hands and my fingers and purple juice on my chin.

Mile 18 - 9:55
Mile 19 - 10:43
Mile 20 - 8:25

After struggling through 18-19 I killed it on mile 20. I just wanted to get home and also to prove I could complete a negative split. So there.

Total miles = 20
Avg Pace = 9:09

I think for my first 20-miler this was a decent pace. Mentally and physically it was hard at times, but at least I know I can do it. If I can power through those tough stretches and just keep going, then I can significantly lower my overall pace. I have 2 more 20-milers scheduled so have the chance to feel more comfortable with the distance before the race. Then, it'll only be 6.2 more and I'm home free!

Casualties of the day: open wounds on hands from blackberry bushes, bloody toe (?), NO chafing!, lingering soreness today in my joints, specifically the outside of my left knee and some bones in my feet. I think everything is blue pain, so I'm not too worried. Heading out for an easy easy 4 miles right now.

Lessons learned:

*Food: Do not go out for 20 miles on an empty stomach, no matter how gross it feels to eat before a run.

*Water: For this long of a run I am going to have to plan water stops for myself. This might mean hiding bottles along my route at certain check points. Perhaps also with a Clif bar or gu.

Topics on my mind:
*salt tablets
*sleeping pills
*race attire

I am very freaked out about the date coming closer but am oh so excited to run back on my old stomping grounds.

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